Vortex life form

From Academic Kids

The Vortex life forms are a fictional alien species from the Ecco the Dolphin video game franchise. Vortex is also the name of the planet they come from; it orbits a star in the constellation Pegasus.

Vortex morphology

The Vortex life forms come in several different shapes. All appear to be at least partially, if not mostly or completely, aquatic.

  • Vortex Drone (Ecco the Dolphin) These drones are green in color and have heads shaped like peanuts. They have thin bodies; the thinness may be because the Vortex have lost their ability to make food and must thus harvest it from at least one planet. This planet is Earth, the setting for the Ecco the Dolphin games. Very few of these drones appear in Ecco: The Tides of Time; one level, Sea of Darkness, features several, while in an earlier level there is one hidden and unusually large specimen
  • Vortex Drone (Ecco: The Tides of Time) These creatures look different from the drones seen in the first game. They appear similar in shape to dolphins, but are all-black and very skeletal in appearance, in addition to looking more machine than animal. The first type has a very large, exaggerated skull-like head, and will attempt to capture Ecco, while the other has a ridged, bladed head similar to the standard vortex drones' and will attack Ecco.
  • Vortex Queen The Vortex Queen is the mother of all Vortex life forms. In Ecco the Dolphin she is seen as being an extremely large, disembodied Vortex Drone head. In Ecco: The Tides of Time only her mouth is visible; her tongue is prehensile and has claspers at the end that can pull unlucky prey into her insides, which in the game led to a machine of some sort, presumably the creature's stomach.
  • Vortex larva Vortex apparently have a larval state. The larvae are clear, and shaped like a slightly squashed teardrop; at the large end of the "drop" are two tentacles that look like a chain of bubbles.


There are other creatures that are seen living in the "Vortex future" in Ecco: The Tides of Time, but they are different looking enough from the Vortex that they are likely either wild or domesticated species.

Vortex technology

The Vortex are a technologically advanced species, able to harvest the life forms of at least Earth's sea with what seems to be a tractor beam that leads to a long tube; they may harvest from planets other than Earth, but this is never confirmed in the games. The Vortex must harvest from the Earth's oceans every 500 of Earth's years, when the planets are in alignment, because they have lost their own ability to make food. Ecco, a bottlenose dolphin collected during one such harvest, weakened and intrigued the Vortex Queen enough that she followed him back to Earth to start a new hive. The Vortex hives are mechanical, with cannon-like structures that shoot what look like organic "bullets" for defense in addition to very strong currents of water hostile to non-vortex life. The hives are mostly underwater, though some bits situated above the surface have been seen; whether this was intentional or a result of falling water levels is unknown.

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